The Australian Veterinary Association’s (AVA) Graduate Mentoring Program provides support for newly graduated vets to help them successfully transition into the workforce. The program connects experienced veterinarians with new graduates, and the AVA has put the call out for vets to join the initiative as mentors.

Veterinarians who have had a least three years of professional experience are needed for the program, and will be connected with final year vet students graduating at the end of this year. Prospective mentors need to be available for at least one hour a month over a 12-month period and must be AVA members. The program involves a virtual mentoring relationship, and is designed to help the next generation of veterinarians to thrive in the vet profession.

For newly graduated vets, the mentoring program provides guidance around career and professional development in the veterinary profession, and an opportunity to reflect on professional challenges and opportunities. Mentors are given the chance to develop their leadership skills, gain the satisfaction of knowing they’re helping others and contributing to the veterinary profession.

Veterinarians Dr Alison Taylor and Dr Anne Fawcett are two of multiple veterinarians who have participated as mentors in the program, they have shared their experiences in this video. Dr Charlotte Johnston is a veterinarian who was mentored through the program, and her feedback highlights the value of the initiative: “It’s been incredibly helpful for me to figure out all of the things you don’t learn at university, such as business skills and work-life balance. Overall, the program has greatly improved my first year of practice and I have felt very supported”, said Dr Johnston.

Victorian veterinarian Dr Marika Ley sums up the value of being a mentor on the program: “The rewards of being a mentor are one of the main reasons I’m an AVA member”, said Dr Ley.  All mentors and mentees in the Graduate Mentoring Program are allocated 2 structured VetEd points for participating in the program, and depending on the state or territory that vets are registered in, they can also claim 0.5 to 1 unstructured points for each hour time spent working with the mentor/mentee.

Click here to learn more about the AVA’s Graduate Mentoring Program.